Dinghy cruise at Dawlish Warren


Current standing procedures (effective 2022 onwards)

Our current standing rules stipulate:

  • Starting times for Down-River Cruises are 2 hours before LW, and for Up-River Cruisers 90 mins before HW.
  • in order to try and keep the fleet together, slower boats like Gulls, Tideways, Mirrors,Toppers and any less experienced skippers will depart from around buoy 29 at 15 minutes before the programmed departure time. Faster boats will depart from buoy 29 at the programmed departure time 
  • the briefing for each cruise is 30 minutes before the published start and all cruise participants are requested to be at the pre-cruise briefing.

Safety guidelines for SYC organised dinghy cruise events

There is a set of guidelines for those thinking about joining the next dinghy cruise. While the dinghy cruise "officer of the day" will give a briefing before the cruise, that briefing will focus on the specific issues for the day. It is requested that dinghy cruise participants read and agree to the guidelines before joining a cruise. For those from a racing background, think of these as the dinghy cruise "Sailing Instructions".

The guidelines discuss in some detail the sailing experience that is recommended before joining one of the dinghy cruises. The strong tidal flows, number of larger commercial boats and the distance from the club mean that dinghy cruises are not ideal for those just beginning to learn to sail.

However, as well as providing some detailed guidance to try to enable you to make the decision about whether to join a dinghy cruise, the guidelines also list the contact details of some of the more regular dinghy cruisers who would be very happy to receive a call from you to chat about dinghy cruises in general and, if you don't think you are ready to join a cruise just yet, how else to more safely gain sailing experience nearer to the club.


If you are curious about what the dinghy cruise "officer of the day" will get up to (or you are rostered as OOD for a cruise), you may want to see this page.

Exe Estuary navigation

Notes from Mike Arstall and Rod Freer about pilotage within the Exe Estaury can be found here. There notes are based on observations made at the start of the 2022 season.

Also available, is some tidal flow information that may be of use if considering a sail out to sea. 


Hauling out dinghies on your own

For the solo dinghy sailor (especially those of the cruising variety who might have a heavier dinghy), the slipway at SYC can be quite steep if you are trying to haul out the dinghy on your own. If this is likely to be the case for you, have a look at the page on how to retrieve a dinghy on your own. A PDF version of the page is available for download here

Contact Information

The SYC dinghy cruising co-ordinators are Mike Arstall & Rod Freer. They can be contacted via the club contacts page. The telephone numbers of some other SYC members who regularly join the dinghy cruises can also be found in the SYC Dinghy Cruise Crews Guidelines.

Otherwise post any questions to the cruising section of the web site forums.

... and finally, the beach cafe

It has to be admitted that a high percentage of dinghy cruises seem to end up at the Exmouth Beach Cafe (as shown in the photo below). Did you know they do loyalty cards now?


A short break at the beach cafe!